Be assured that this phrase will be followed by a lie, “There are only two kinds of people in this world…” Of course, there are about seven billion kinds of people in this world and one of the most profound revelations I ever experienced was this:
There never has been and never will be another person exactly like YOU. I mean YOU. Even if you have an identical twin, you know that is true. So how incredibly valuable are you? And everyone else you meet?
Yet we can divide folks into (very) rough types on the basis of their personality. Thing is, no one is exactly alike here, either, and there are overlaps and continua, just like in any aspect of life. Having said all that, see if you can place yourself in one of these three groups, or mostly in one with perhaps one foot in another?
Lawyers want to be right, to be certain-and they would prefer their certainties be in writing, thank you. If they are religious they will follow the letter of their Book and if they are not they want peer-reviewed scientific papers. They want rules and hierarchies and order. They tend to be very organized and keep their desk and homes squeaky clean. Chaos is the nightmare of the Lawyer, it is an existential threat, they believe, not only to themselves, but to the very cosmos.
They get things done, because they make lists and check off the tasks when completed. They have calendars and schedules and keep track of their bank balance. They prefer to cite authorities and the more degrees the authority has earned, the more of an authority they are. They can be a bit driven and controlling unless they realize that this is not efficient, because efficiency is of paramount importance to a Lawyer. Life is a straight road with sheer drops into flaming hell on each side.
A Thinker views the world more holistically than the Lawyer, who tends to see everything in black and white. Thinkers would like to be right, of course, but admit that they could be wrong; after all they’ve been wrong before. Maybe they need more information. Therefore they seek information and are somewhat open to correction.
They ask Big Questions and seek high and low (but not compulsively) to find Big Answers. They like order, but allow for some flexibility in that order. After all, things change as time goes by and adjustments may have to be made. The Thinker sees life more as a process than a straight dash to the finish line. If they should wander off the road, they will just turn around and get back on it.
Thinkers need some time alone. To think. They favor persuasion over force and believe that people will change their minds when given enough information. If they run into a Lawyer, they will be shocked and confused that this does not work with him. Lawyers label Thinkers as wishy-washy, but they are not.
Kokopelli is the name given to those little figures from the Stone Age, dancing and playing a flute, their hair flying in the breeze. Kokopellis have given up on certainty and laugh at those who think this is attainable, considering human limitations to a three dimensional world divided into 24 hour days. She suspects (and quantum physics confirms) that there are lots more dimensions. What are those like? “Who knows?” laughs the Kokopelli, dancing away, hair flying in the breeze.
Kokopellis are a horror to Lawyers, who suspect that they should all be locked up to protect civilization. To Thinkers, Kokopellis are harmless and fun and a Thinker might join in the dance now and then to give his brain a rest. If too many Thinkers follow the Kokopelli, the Lawyer will pass a law criminalizing flute-playing, dancing and flying hair, because this is obviously leading to everlasting chaos and the end of the world.
So which are you? Have you changed throughout your life from one to the other?
Which one is best?
It should be fairly obvious that all three are needed. The Lawyer to organize and to provide efficiency. The Thinker to moderate and perhaps keep the Lawyer from incarcerating the Kokopelli. The Kokopelli to come up with entirely new solutions to sticky problems…and to bring joy.